Episode 71
October 10, 2023

Troilus and Criseyde

Hosted by Chris Piuma and Suzanne Conklin Akbari

Allas, of me, unto the worldes ende,
Shal neither been ywriten nor ysonge
No good word, for thise bokes wol me shende.
O, rolled shal I been on many a tonge;
Thurghout the world my belle shal be ronge;
And wommen most wol hate me of alle.
Allas, that swich a cas me sholde falle!

(Alas! Until the end of the world, no good word will be written or sung about me, because these books will utterly shame me. Oh, I will be rolled on many a tongue, throughout the world my bell will be rung — and women will hate me most of all. Alas, that such a thing should happen to me!)

Geoffrey Chaucer’s narrative poem Troilus and Criseyde tells a love story — if by “love” you mean romantic obsession, coercion, and worse — all set during the Trojan War. Chris and Suzanne talk about how this book explores the interiority of its characters, how it depicts independence and politics, and how it explores the way narratives unfold within systems of tropes and traditions.

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Show Notes.

Geoffrey Chaucer: Troilus and Criseyde (in the original and in a modernization).

Other works by Chaucer: The Canterbury Tales; The Riverside Chaucer (i.e., his complete works).

Our episode on the Iliad.

(The Spouter-Inn will in fact turn five years old in January.)

Boccaccio: Il Filostrato.

Our episodes on Paradiso, Consolation of Philosophy, and the Metamorphoses.

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